Education Lab is a place for constructive conversation. One of the project’s main objectives is to provide an online space where people from every corner of the education landscape feel comfortable sharing their thoughts, opinions and ideas. To help accomplish this goal, here are some simple guidelines for commenting on Education Lab posts. These guidelines determine how we will moderate comments. Our seattletimes.com commenting guidelines also apply here.
DO respect others and focus your criticism on ideas rather than people.
DON’T use personal attacks. Profanity, name-calling and comments about other users’ personal lives will not be tolerated.
Bad: Well, Judas Priest! Tammy the Teacher sure is full of phooey. I feel bad for that buck-faced husband of hers.
Better: I disagree with Tammy the Teacher’s argument. Now, allow me to offer my own fact-based counterpoint…
DO keep the conversation focused on the topic at hand.
DON’T use the space to promote your personal agenda or voice irrelevant opinions about tangential issues.
Bad: This education problem is all Miley Cyrus’ fault. She is the worst person ever and the cause of all our country’s troubles. You know what else really grinds my gears? Long lines at the supermarket…
Better: This is a really complex issue, and it doesn’t seem as though there is a simple solution. However, one idea I’ve observed is…
DO frame your comments in way that pushes the discussion toward achievable outcomes.
DON’T make a habit of shooting down other people’s ideas without offering your own alternatives.
Bad: Our local school system has been doomed for years. Might as well just give up now and send all the kids back to work in the fields.
Better: Education leaders have made many mistakes with Topic X. It’s time to shift our focus to a new way of thinking about this issue.